I don’t believe in polarisation, the poor don’t have religion: Madhavi | Hyderabad News


HYDERABAD: After making headlines as the first woman contestant of BJP against Asaduddin Owaisi in AIMIM‘s stronghold of Hyderabad, Kompella Madhavi Latha is gearing up to undertake a padayatra in the Old City. Born and brought up in the Old City, Madhavi Latha tells Sribala Vadlapatla that she is not a ‘paradropped’ leader, asserting she would work for the welfare of Hindus and Muslims alike.Excerpts from the interview:
How do you respond to ‘paradrop’ charges? Some leaders say party should have selected a better candidate.
When I have decided to contest, I know I have to be immune to what people say. If some leaders in my party are upset about my selection, I will meet them. I want to cover as many households as possible first. I have been serving the Old City for long. May be, our leaders (BJP top brass) took note of my service and announced my candidature. I have not approached any leader, it all happened naturally.
You are portrayed as a ‘Hindutva poster woman’. Do you think a Hindutva Vs minority vote battle happening? How confident are you of Hindu votes polarising?
I do not believe in polarisation of votes. I have been working with Pasmanda Muslims in the Old City. The poor do not have religion. I have worked on electoral rolls in the past year and found out that there are 3.5 lakh Hindu voters and there is no safe atmosphere for voting. Bogus voting in Old City has been happening for ages and no one has raised his/her voice.
I hope voting percentage will go up this time. Yes, I am a Hindu woman and my dharma talks about ‘Madhava seva’ (service of fellow human beings first). I have also ensured as many as 1,000 deliveries for Muslim women. Some leaders see religion as a panacea, which is their problem as they see it only for their political benefit.
You are chairperson of a private hospital and AIMIM leaders also own hospitals. Do you see this as business rivalry spilling into political rivalry?
There is no comparison. We set up our hospitals after working hard for two decades. NASSCOM says most IT jobs are bagged by Hyderabad but not a single job goes to Hyderabad Lok Sabha seat (Old City area). I want to change that.
My fight is for Hyderabad’s equitable share on a par with nearby LS seats. There are no streetlights in some areas. People live in poverty that they cannot even afford electric bills. I want to change their lives. . Hindu girls, poor Muslim children should all get educated.
You are accused of indulging in moral policing, advising girls not to wear skirts and no burqas for Muslim women.
I only mean that women should dress elegantly. I am against face of any human being covered. Girls who are not from the fashion and entertainment industry face challenges when they dress in a certain manner. I also tell my daughters to be careful.
What about your emphasis on protecting Hindu heritage?
I stand for Hindus and Muslims in the Old City. There are more than 800 ancient temples in Old City that require attention as they are in a dilapidated condition. My focus is not just on Bhagyalakshmi temple.


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